Pat Swilling Jr. transitions from basketball to football at Tulsa

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After a four-year college basketball career, former guard Pat Swilling Jr. will stay at Tulsa and compete for one final season on the football field, according to a report from Bill Haiston of the Tulsa World.

Swilling Jr. was suspended from the Tulsa basketball team for the final 11 games of the 2013-14 season because of a university and police investigation stemming from an alleged sexual assault, but the native of New Orleans was cleared and he’s finishing up his college athletic career on the football field.

A 6-foot-3 guard, Swilling Jr. started his basketball career at Saint Joseph’s before transferring to the College of Southern Idaho and finishing up at Tulsa. Swilling Jr. averaged 8.6 points and two rebounds per game during his senior season at Tulsa.

Swilling Jr. is the son of former NFL All-Pro and College Football Hall-of-Famer Pat Swilling. The elder Swilling was a dominant linebacker and had a prolific college career at Georgia Tech, becoming a first-team All-American in 1985, before moving onto the NFL and making five consecutive Pro Bowls from 1989 through 1993. Swilling spent his 13-year NFL career with the New Orleans Saints, Detroit Lions and Oakland Raiders and finished with 107.5 career NFL sacks.

The move to the football field won’t be completely foreign to Swilling Jr. Besides knowing the game from his father, Swilling Jr. played both football and basketball at Brother Martin High School in New Orleans and according to Haiston, Central Florida, Oklahoma State and Tulane also showed interest in Swilling Jr. as a football player before he opted to stay at Tulsa and play for head coach Bill Blakenship. Swilling Jr. will likely line up at H-Back for the Golden Hurricane and he could also see time at wide receiver or corner.

Former Wichita State assistant returns as a consultant

Chris Jans, Gregg Marshall
Associated Press
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Prior to a one-year stint as the head coach coach at Bowling Green that came to an end in early April as a result of an incident at a Bowling Green restaurant, Chris Jans was a member of Gregg Marshall’s coaching staff at Wichita State from 2007-14. During those seven seasons Jans was a key figure as the Shockers made the progression to a respected national power.

Jans is back in Wichita, with Paul Suellentrop of the Wichita Eagle reporting Thursday that he’s serving as a consultant to the program. Jans’ consulting agreement runs for 45 days, which the school can renew, and he’ll be paid $10,000 for the work. While Jans isn’t allowed to do any coaching, he can watch practices and provide Marshall and the coaching staff with his observations.

“He will be able to consult with the coaching staff, only on what he observes in practice,” said Darron Boatright, WSU deputy athletics director. “By NCAA rule, a consultant is not allowed to have communication with student-athletes … not about basketball-related activities or performance.”

While Jans (who according to the story has served in a similar role for another school) can’t do any coaching in this role, his return does give Marshall another trusted voice to call upon when needed. Wichita State bid farewell to an assistant coach this spring with Steve Forbes being hired as the head coach at East Tennessee State, with his position being filled by former Sunrise Christian Academy coach Kyle Lindsted.

h/t ShockerHoops.net

AUDIO: Rick Pitino discusses allegations, future at Louisville

Rick Pitino
Associated Press
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Thursday afternoon marked the first time since Friday that Louisville head coach Rick Pitino commented on the controversy that has taken his program by storm. Speaking with Terry Meiners of 840 WHAS in Louisville, Pitino discussed the escort scandal, what could have possibly led former staffer Andre McGee down the path he’s alleged to have taken in Katina Powell’s book and his future at Louisville.

The interview began with Meiners asking Pitino if it changed his thinking as to whether or not he needed to resign, which (as one would expect) Pitino shot down. Also discussed was the statement released by school president Dr. James Ramsey, which expressed support for athletic director Tom Jurich but did not mention Pitino at all.

“Well I can’t answer that, Terry,” Pitino said when asked why he wasn’t mentioned in the statement. “Twenty-six years ago Kentucky brought me in to make the program compliant to NCAA rules. (Then-Kentucky president) Dr. (David) Roselle and (then Kentucky athletic director) C.M. Newton thought I was the guy to come in and change around the images, change around the culture and add a lot of discipline to the program. And I did that.

“And then I came here to the University of Louisville, and if someone was five seconds late or not early consequences would be paid from a disciplinary standpoint,” Pitino continued. “This is obviously not a person being late, this is not about a person (not) working hard. This is about things that are very disgusting, things that turn my stomach, things that keep me up without sleeping.

“But unfortunately, I had no knowledge of any of this and don’t believe in it. It’s sickening to me, the whole thing. But I’m thinking of my 13 players, I’m thinking of our program, and I’m sorry that Dr. Ramsey did not think enough to mention me but that’s something I cannot control.”

Below is audio of the full interview, which ran just over 17 minutes in length.